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June 17, 2009

CW programs and events provide entertainment for all ages

Colonial Williamsburg’s new programs, special events, anniversaries and discount offerings make Williamsburg the ideal destination for families this summer. From scavenger hunts for kids, the award-winning street drama The Revolutionary City® and the 30th anniversary of African American programming, to the construction at Charlton’s Coffeehouse, Colonial Kids Club and two special discount packages just for families, Colonial Williamsburg offers summer entertainment for the young and the young-at-heart.

Colonial Williamsburg’s Art Museums invite kids to uncover magical creatures and decipher secret codes in the galleries this summer. On Tuesdays at 4 p.m., kids can Crack the Code, learning about the codes and ciphers used by George Washington and other leaders during the American Revolution, and using spy techniques to crack the codes themselves. Fridays at 1:30 p.m., children aged eight and above can participate in a special guided Magical Creatures tour, during which they will explore the galleries for griffins, phoenixes, mermaids, dragons and unicorns while recording their discoveries in a book to take home.

The Revolutionary City provides visitors with an engaging street theater experience chronicling the transition of residents of 18th-century Williamsburg from subjects of the crown to citizens of a new nation. Guests cheer and jeer at and with actor-interpreters during the scenes, and proceed en masse between scene locations. The Get Revved!!! program for families puts the stories in context for youngsters, while nuanced messages woven throughout the performances appeal to adults.

Colonial Williamsburg’s African American programming is celebrating its 30th anniversary this year. The weekend of July 17-19 will feature a variety of special African American programs in honor of the celebration. “We are Family: From Africa to America” will portray the impact of the system of slavery on families and the role that family played in surviving enslavement.

Programs will also encourage families to look at their own family histories and begin to preserve and record them; The Story Keepers Project will offer visitors the opportunity to conduct interviews with family members and record those interviews onto CD to preserve and share with future generations.

The Charlton’s Coffeehouse is the first Historic Area construction project in 50 years, and the site is fascinating to see. The coffeehouse was a hotbed of political, business and social activity adjacent to the colonial Capitol during the years leading to the American Revolution. Visitors can read about the 18th-century construction practices used to create the building and learn more about what the Coffeehouse will look like when it opens later this year. The reconstruction will provide an exciting new venue for Historic Area programming including using the porch as a principal stage for scenes from The Revolutionary City and other special event performances.

Parents can take a break with the help of the Colonial Kids Club. Children of Colonial Williamsburg hotel guests are invited to participate in a variety of supervised activities such as arts and crafts, drawing, scavenger hunts and visits to child-friendly sites in the Historic Area. Activities vary daily and offer parents an opportunity to enjoy free time. Children can attend morning, afternoon or full-day sessions. Morning and afternoon sessions are $25 for the first child and $15 for each additional child. The full-day session is $40 for the first child and $25 for each additional child. Lunch is included.

Families interested in some physical activity can participate in Stroke of the Day, complimentary 30-minute tennis and golf clinics available for Colonial Williamsburg hotel guests. June through September, athletes of all ages can spend time with the pros. Golf clinics are Tuesday and Saturday at 3 p.m. Tennis clinics are Monday and Thursday mornings at 11:30 a.m. Reservations are required.

Colonial Williamsburg also has two packages for budget-conscious families. The Summer Saver package allows families of four to book a five-day, four-night Colonial Williamsburg Vacation for just $599 plus tax. The basic package includes accommodations, breakfast daily, length-of-stay Colonial Williamsburg admission passes, a $200 resort credit for use during the stay, and discounts on evening programs and purchases at select on-site stores: a value of more than $1,000. The Lodge Bounce package includes deluxe accommodations and general length-of-stay admission to Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area and museums, Busch Gardens and Water Country USA. Available for three-night minimum stays, the package costs $292 per night, per family of four.

Also available online is a 10 percent discount on Colonial Williamsburg’s Governor’s Key-to-the-City: 1-Day Plus Pass, regularly priced at $46 for adults and $23 for kids ages six-17. The pass includes admission to Historic Area buildings, including the Governor’s Palace, access to Revolutionary City, tickets to the Art Museums of Colonial Williamsburg, free parking, admission to the Orientation Walking Tour, and complimentary use of the shuttle bus system, and for a limited time, enjoy a second consecutive day—FREE.

The Bounce Pass ticket to Colonial Williamsburg’s Historic Area and museums, Busch Gardens and Water Country USA, excluding room nights, is available for booking online at a 20% discount.

For more information, call 1-800-HISTORY or visit Colonial Williamsburg’s Web site at

Established in 1926, the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation is the not-for-profit educational institution that preserves and operates the restored 18th-century Revolutionary capital of Virginia as a town-sized living history museum, telling the inspirational stories of our nation’s founding men and women. Within the restored and reconstructed buildings, historic interpreters, attired as colonial men and women from slaves to shopkeepers to soldiers, relate stories of colonial Virginia society and culture – stories of our journey to become Americans – while historic trades people research, demonstrate and preserve the 18th-century world of work and industry. As Colonial Williamsburg interprets life in the time of the American Revolution guests interact with history through “Revolutionary City®” – a dramatic live street theater presentation.

Williamsburg is located in Virginia’s Tidewater region, 20 minutes from Newport News, within an hour’s drive of Richmond and Norfolk, and 150 miles south of Washington, D.C., off Interstate 64.

Media Contact:
Penna Rogers
(757) 220-7121